Kids of Appetite by David Arnold


Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Coming of Age, Mystery

Pages: 352

Expected publication: September 20th 2016 by Viking Books for Young Readers

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Victor Benucci and Madeline Falco have a story to tell.
It begins with the death of Vic’s father.
It ends with the murder of Mad’s uncle.
The Hackensack Police Department would very much like to hear it.
But in order to tell their story, Vic and Mad must focus on all the chapters in between.

This is a story about:

1. A coded mission to scatter ashes across New Jersey.
2. The momentous nature of the Palisades in winter.
3. One dormant submarine.
4. Two songs about flowers.
5. Being cool in the traditional sense.
6. Sunsets & ice cream & orchards & graveyards.
7. Simultaneous extreme opposites.
8. A narrow escape from a war-torn country.
9. A story collector.
10. How to listen to someone who does not talk.
11. Falling in love with a painting.
12. Falling in love with a song.
13. Falling in love.


This was my first time reading a book by David Arnold and while it was an interesting experience I don’t think I’d rank it as an amazing one. This is a book with many narrators and it is spread in a rather interesting fashion. Each Chapter is an interrogation room and from that view you are able to learn about each character.

Victor “Vic” Bennuci III – A teen with a disorder that affects the ability to form an expression. His father died two years ago and his mother has a new boyfriend who has two children. When he proposes Vic’s mother, Vic decides to grab his father’s urn and run away to complete his father’s bucket list.

He meets others along the way, Mads, Baz, Zuz and Coco. Each one has a background, a story of their own and we learn more about them. More specifically Madline “Mads” Falcon. A teen who lost her parents at a young age, lives with her drunken angry uncle, grandmother and Mads always has fresh bruises on her.

The tone of the book is whimsical, fantastical even. It’s hard to believe these teens [and young adults,] accomplish what they do, it’s a touch unrealistic and while this is just a book it helps when it is relatable in some aspects. Yes, there is the struggle of a teen from an abusive past, poverty, the system, bullying, but I just didn’t connect to this scenario. As much of what is shown and told in the book I couldn’t connect with any of the characters.

There were actually some points in which I switched to another book because I found myself frustrated with the characters. Most children don’t think this way, it’s strange to picture teens with these deep insights, philosophical minds, pondering the abyss, and while there are those brilliant minds out there, overall it just… made me kind of snort.

It was “okay” I just couldn’t get into it.

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